October 1 is the deadline to apply to become a Master Gardener in Pine and every county in Minnesota for 2020. The Master Gardener program is an educational program of the University of Minnesota Extension.  It provides people who have an interest in gardening with the opportunity to take a basic horticulture course from horticulture experts at the University of Minnesota and to share their gardening knowledge and experience with citizens of the county.

Individuals in the program will start an internship that begins with a 48-hour Master Gardener Core Course the second week of January, 2020. There are two ways to take the course.  One is to take it online between January and May. The other option is to take it in-person at eight sessions on Fridays and Saturdays between early January and early February at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum near Chanhassen. Or, it can be taken by a combination of these two options.

Following the core course, interns will complete 50 hours of volunteer time in their first year by working with other local master gardeners on a variety of projects that inform the public about gardening and horticulture. Some of those projects can include community education classes, community garden, elementary youth gardening, gardening information booths, demonstration gardens, a plant sale, newspaper columns and others.

In Pine County anyone interested in becoming a master gardener should apply by Oct. 1 by contacting Terry Salmela at the Pine County Extension office at the courthouse in Pine City at 800-657-3813 Ext. #3 or email: salme002@umn.edu

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